Solana Beach City Council adopts financing program for businesses to make energy-efficient improvements

By Kristina Houck

Solana Beach commercial property owners have a new way to finance energy-efficient improvements for their businesses.

In a 5-0 vote, council members on March 26 adopted the Figtree Property Assessed Clean Energy, or PACE, Financing Program, which allows owners to make energy efficient upgrades to their properties through voluntary assessment liens.

The council in October 2013 opted to participate in the Home Energy Retrofit Opportunity, or HERO, program, which launched in the coastal community, as well as the San Diego communities of Carlsbad, Lemon Grove, Oceanside, San Marcos and Vista, on Feb. 10. Through the HERO program, homeowners can make energy-efficient upgrades to their properties with low-cost, tax deductible financing paid through their property tax bill.

Although the HERO program offers financing to both residential and commercial property owners, it focuses on residential properties. Figtree, another PACE provider, focuses on commercial properties.

PACE allows up to 20 percent of a property’s value to be financed for energy efficiency, renewable energy or water conservation upgrades. The financing creates an assessment lien on the property, which is paid as semi-annual installments on the property tax bill.

“It’s just another option for the citizens of this community to exercise if they so choose,” said City Manager David Ott.

For more information about Figtree Financing, visit www.figtreefinancing.com.

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